Collaborative sculpture; The politics of collective and social artistic practice


Prerequisites: No prerequisites are required. A basic interest in sculpture, the ‘Hacking Culture’ at MIT, interacting with the community, contemporary art practices and/or a desire to work collaboratively in a visual arts environment is all that is needed.

Load: 1 P.M. - 5 P.M. on Jan. 9 - 13, 17 - 20 (Daily four-hour sessions over two weeks.)

Time Outside Class: 5-15 hours in total

Special Instructions: Bring laptop and/or sketchbooks to class


Part contemporary theory seminar, part studio art class, this course will serve as an introduction to the politics of collaborative and social practices in contemporary visual arts. It will be an opportunity to directly engage with these ideas as a maker while interacting with the wider community. Class participants will organize artist collectives, plan, and execute site-specific sculptural installations informed by lectures and discussions. Each collective will address specific issues relevant to the wider community, with site-specific installation as their entry point. The installations will be rendered with the objective of igniting a critically self-reflexive dialog with an engaged community that encourages viewer participation. The collectives will be responsible for sourcing all installation materials. While participants are encouraged to use recycled and found materials, they may obtain materials by any means. Lectures by Jaishri Abichandani (founder, South Asian Women’s Creative Collective http://www.sawcc.org, New York and London) and Nathan Thomas Wilson (Co-founder, Kali Yuga Zoo Brigade artist collective, Philadelphia) will address the politics of authorship, place, commodification, art institutions, legibility of art, audience, and social interaction, as they relate to artistic practice in the context of late capitalism. Additionally, we’ll examine the parallels and discrepancies between contemporary collaborative art practices and MIT’s Hacking Culture.